• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 1961

    Old Master And 19th Century Drawings

    24 January 2008, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 96

    Pierre-Adrien Pâris (Besançon 1745-1819)

    Design for an arabesque ornament wall panel with putti, animals and flowers

    Price Realised  

    Pierre-Adrien Pâris (Besançon 1745-1819)
    Design for an arabesque ornament wall panel with putti, animals and flowers
    signed and dated 'Paris Romae 1773'
    pen and black ink, watercolor, black ink framing lines
    19½ x 13 3/8 in. (496 x 339 mm.)


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    Executed during Pâris' first stay in Rome (1771-1774), when he was a pensionnaire at the Académie de France then located at the Palazzo Mancini on the Corso. Pâris' interest in the decorative patterns and arabesques of the Raphael Loggie in the Vatican is well documented (see Giovanni Volpato. Les loges de Raphaël et la galerie du Palais Farnèse, exhib. cat., Tours, Musée des Beaux-Arts, 2007, pp. 202-203). He frequently visited them, described drawing them in his journal, and accompanied French visitors there during their stay in the city. One such visitor was the influential fermier général Jacques-Onésyme Bergeret de Grancourt (1715-1785), whom he accompanied to the Vatican in 1773. Drawings similar to this one, after the grotesques on the pilasters in the Loggie, are bound in albums now in the Musée des Beaux-Arts, Besançon (ibidem, nos. 52 and 53).
    This sheet may belong to a group of drawings that Pâris sent to the Académie de France in Paris to justify his activity abroad, as it is recorded in his diary ('Listes des études que j'envoye à Paris', ibidem, p.203, n. 12).
    Presumably the artist enjoyed the combination of his name and 'Romae' in his signature.